Updated on Friday at 3:45pm

It seems that the rumor mill is at it again. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic is now reporting that the Cincinnati Reds and New York Yankees are making progress in a deal that would bring right-handed pitcher Sonny Gray to Cincinnati.

Like several other rumors, this one has been around forever. Jon Heyman says that the Yankees have shown interest in two of the Cincinnati Reds Top 10 prospects.

Updated on Thursday at 5:35pm

It seems that perhaps the Cincinnati Reds are out on this one, according to Andy Martino of SNY.

Original story below

For what seems to be the millionth time this offseason, there’s word that the New York Yankees are trying to aggressively move starting pitcher Sonny Gray. According to Jon Heyman, the Cincinnati Reds are still one of the teams in discussion for the right-handers services.

This is a road that we’ve been down more than a few times here. The Yankees just signed Adam Ottavino to a 3-year, $27M deal. That move pushes Sonny Gray even further down the Yankees depth chart, and with the money owed and his relative lack of a role in New York, they seem to be doing all that they can to move him.

You can make the argument that he could help Cincinnati. If he pitches in Cincinnati like he did away from Yankee Stadium in 2018, that’s a huge help. If he goes back to the pitcher he has been in several past seasons, that would be a huge help, too. But there’s still reason for concern as his walk rate jumped up to a career worst in 2018 – and his ERA was 4.90.

He’s also, like two other members of the Reds rotation, only under team control for the 2019 season. That could leave the Reds with just two pitchers returning to their rotation for the 2020 season. On the surface that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If the team wins in 2019, they can figure out 2020 in the offseason.

The offseason hasn’t exactly been lackluster in Cincinnati. The Reds and Dodgers trade got everyone excited, and for good reason. But that’s been the only real move they’ve made, too. And we’re less than a month out from spring training. It appears that if this move is going to happen, after months of speculation, it could be happening soon. In the famous words of Samuel L. Jackson in Jurassic Park: Hold onto your butts!

188 Responses

  1. matthew hendley

    Actually not totally adverse to this idea. Gray could fit into the rotation for a look see, he signed for at least a Mil less then was expected. Obviously, Trammell should not be sent over for him, would be an overpay for a player with too many questions. A reasonable trade return however should be considered. All top10 prospects are out of the conversation. a combination of 10-20 individuals could be considered, slightly better if the Yankees help pay it down. If he turns out as a good Pickup then great, and if he doesn’t, DFA him and bring someone up from Louisville

  2. Sandman

    Can anybody tell me WHY the Reds are trying to TRADE for an ace when one sits right there in free agency (Kuechel)?

    To me, it makes all the sense in the world to sign Kuechel bcuz that way we can keep our prospects AND get an ace!

    It’s like the Reds brass is TRYING to give away our prospects that we’re counting on for sustained success! Btw, I consider it “giving away” our prospects (even though I realize we’d be getting a good or even great pitcher) bcuz of the simple fact that we could hang onto our prospects if we were to sign Kuechel.

    • Richard Fitch

      I’m sure the Reds are doing what everyone else is doing with respect to this free agent class–waiting Keuchel out. It’s not about the money as much as it is about the years and the reports are he wants a 5 year deal. That’s a big commitment for a pitcher who is no longer a top-of-the rotation guy. But I agree with you–trading away any of their high-value prospects would be insanely short-sighted.

      • Sandman

        I believe Kuechel would still be good enough to top our rotation, though.

        But, if it’s true and his performance is going to continue to decline, then it’s back to the old adage that you gotta give up something to get something. I just hope we don’t give them the entire farm for one guy. It’s gonna hurt some no matter who we wind up giving up (if anyone at all).

    • Bob Purkey

      I don’t know, but maybe Kuechel just doesn’t want to sign with the Reds. . .

    • Jeff Gangloff

      What makes you so sure Dallas wants to come here? At the end of the day its up to him to go where he wants.

      • Sandman

        You could very well be right, Kuechel may very well not want to come here. But I think that’d be a stupid move on his part.

        But I don’t think Kuechel is stupid. As a matter of fact, I’m willing to bet he’s pretty smart. That being said, he’s GOT to see how serious the Reds brass are about winning. He’s got to see the pieces we’re starting to put together. It’s hard to not be excited about the Reds future and it’s hard not to imagine that the Reds are close to being a serious WS contender if they continue to make smart moves.

        So, a player would have to be stupid to not wanna join a team on the rise bcuz that could mean a world championship.

    • BK

      I’m not sure I want Gray for even a lower level prospect. To me, Kluber is worth it to me because he’s fantastic and would be controlled for 3 years. Of course, I don’t want to overpay for anyone.

      As for Keuchel, he will cost us our 2nd round pick–so we’re sacrificing a future prospect and more importantly, a chunk of our signing pool. If we were good last year, that pick wouldn’t be nearly as valuable as is to this year. We also have the 1st round competitive balance pick so we have the potential of having one of the larger signing pools this year. That gives the Reds a big advantage throughout the draft, so perhaps that explains the reluctance to go the FA route with Keuchel.

    • JoshG

      Kuechel is not an Ace
      He would go to the front of the reds rotation but no where near a true ” Ace ” at this point
      I would rather them sign him than trade for anyone not named Kluber (or another perennial CY Young candidate) though


      The amount of money that would be necessary would hamstring the Reds in getting a CF. The Reds have prospects that could cover losing Shed Long. Trading Stephenson would make less sense. Taylor Trammel makes less sense for the Yankees as their OF is is full.

  3. Harold

    We gave theYankes Chapman! It’s time for the Yanked to return the favor!

    • JayTheRed

      just cause someone makes a terrible trade does not mean that the team getting that player gets a discount because of an earlier trade mistake.

  4. Seat101


    Perhaps free agent pitchers aren’t going to sign until they find out which teams will have money after the big free-agent position player sign?

    Frankly, as long as we don’t give up any of our top seven prospects for Gray, I would be OK.

  5. WVRedlegs

    Here we go again. Round and round we go, where we stop nobody knows. The Yankees have no need now for Scooter, so a Scooter for Gray trade is way off the table. The only thing the Yankees have a need for are prospects. So unless the Yankees come down from the Trammell or Santillan demands, that should be a no-go.
    It is kind of funny, when you pull up Tanner Roark and Alex Wood on Baseball-Reference, at the bottom of the page they list comparisons for each player. And on both Roark and Wood, Sonny Gray is listed. On Roark, Gray is the very first comp. on the list. On Wood it is a little further down the list.
    Other than Gray’s connection with pitching coach Derek Johnson, there doesn’t seem to be much of a match up for the Reds. It doesn’t make any sense to pay top dollar in a top prospect and have to pay him $8MM for 1 year.
    I hope this is nothing more than a plan-D or even E in the remaining pecking order to “get the pitching”. A just doing their due diligence thing.
    At this point, it might be Kluber or bust, and then move on. Then dive in to the #1 starter pool next off-season.

    • Hotto4Votto

      I’d make an offer similar to what we gave up for Roark. I think Mella’s name came up in earlier reports of discussions. That sounds about right. No one from the top 10, and there’s probably a few names beyond that I wouldn’t want the Reds to give up (namely Jose Garcia, Mike Siani, and Mariel Bautista) for one year of a marginal upgrade at the back end of the rotation.

  6. James Austin

    More has been done than this–adding Roark along with Wood upgrades the rotation. Adding Gray could do that, too. That’s a 60% change in the rotation from last year, plus no Homer Bailey.

    I’d like to see them get a top-tier guy, too, but I’m not sold on trading Senzel for Kluber. Timing seems just a bit off to make that play (getting Latos in 2011, on the other hand, was perfectly timed and thus worth the price). Hopefully we can get Keuchel. But I agree with an earlier article that he might be waiting on Harper and Machado before deciding on what I assume is the offer the Reds have already made .

    • JoshG

      I’d rather give Mahle, Reed, Lorenzen and such one more chance at the #5 spot than trade or sign another mid to back of the rotation starter.
      for me it’s trade for a true number one (Kluber, Greinke or a surprise), OR sign Kuechel (who I think is a 2 or good 3) or call the rotation adding done and let the young guys fight for that last spot, then maybe invest the money somewhere else .. CF.. bullpen ..

      no need to sign anymore average pitchers, already have enough of those

  7. Big Ed

    I think the Yankees at this point would be happy to get a pimiento cheese sandwich for Gray. A Trammell-level player was always nonsense.

    • Mark Moore

      +250 because you made me laugh with that one!

    • doofus

      Pimento Cheese had a great wOBA+ at Pensacola this past season!

    • ToBeDetermined

      mmm, pimiento cheese.

      Also, you get points for starting the longest thread.

    • Michael Smith

      Thank you for reminding me of one of my favorite scenes in Better Call Saul

  8. matthew hendley

    Speak of the devil, it seems he is on the move today…. MLTBR says close to being traded. Who will the team be?

  9. WVRedlegs

    Heyman has a new tweet up within the last half hour.
    “Yankees are indeed close to trading Sonny Gray. Teams are also asking about Tommy Kahnle and Jonathan Holder.”
    Now if the Reds are asking about Holder in addition to Gray, then this could end up being very good news. Holder is going to be an incredible bullpen pitcher in the very near future. He is just very overshadowed in that vaunted Yankee bullpen.

  10. BearcatNation

    Honestly, I think that making a move to get Gray and then sign AJ Pollock are the transactions the Reds should make to firm up the major part of their offseason. Obviously, I’m not interested in giving up a top 8 or so prospect for Gray, but I think a deal can be done without that. I also think Pollock is going to be gotten at a bargain for his skills. I recognize that comes with quite a bit of risk, but I think that risk is slightly exaggerated.

    It would be nice to find a home for Scooter in a trade, as I think moving Senzel to 2B is the right move for 2019. If those moves were made, our roster looks like it can compete for a WC in 2019, and that’s with allowing flexibility for the future.

    • Bob Purkey

      Exactly. . .get Gray for little to no top prospects and sign Pollock for CF. hat gives you leverage to move Scooter, Kemp and others during the spring, summer or at the deadline.

    • JoshG

      I honestly don’t know if Gray is better than Mahle/Lorenzen , so I don’t see the point in adding him now … before they made the trades for wood and Roarke yeah… not now

  11. Steelerfan

    Is anyone a little worried about having three free agent starters going into 2020? There is not going to be much room for “sorting” of the younger pitchers if they acquire Gray, and if we don’t win big in 2019, they are going to be rebuilding the rotation almost from scratch the next year.

    • WVRedlegs

      An extension for Alex Wood and Luis Castillo. Build a foundation for the rotation. DeSclafani would have 1 more year. And the young starter who rises up to take the #5 spot in 2019 will make up 80% of the 2020 rotation. But if they get Gray, that young starter won’t have a chance to claim a spot. One of Stephenson, Reed, Romano, Mahle, or Sims have to stake a claim to that spot in 2019.
      Santillan could be ready for 2020. But the free agent market will be flush with #1 starter types, too. The thing to do next off-season might be to trade DeSclafani to open a rotation spot for Santillan, and go get a #1 starter like MadBum or Verlander or Cole or Sale. Not too worried about the 2020 rotation, yet. But things have to fall in place with those 2 extensions. I get your concern though.

      • Bob Purkey

        Stephenson should not even be in the discussion here. He has had numerous chances and failed miserably. Send him back to Louisville and unless he is lights out down there he is a trade fodder add-in

      • JoshG

        good luck getting a top starter to come to pitch half their games at Great American

    • matthew hendley

      Stephenson is out of options. would try to trade him as a Change of Scenery candidate.

      • Bob Purkey

        Matthew: Thanks for the correction. Since that is the case, add him into any trade option left, or release him.

      • matthew hendley

        NP. Stephenson is a tricky balancing act. Not quite good enough to stay, not bad enough to be thrown away. I really would try to trade him away, something similar to cingrani back in the day. Of course there is always Korea.

      • Reaganspad

        Robert has more value to the Reds than to any other team. He is worth a year with the new pitching coach even if he is in the pen. His stuff is superior to Sims.

        His control is something you have to give a chance to the pitching coach to work on. His AAA last year, if with another team, would have been someone we would take a shot on

      • BK

        I agree with reaganspad; Stephenson should stay put.

      • Matt Hendley

        Ok…i can dig it….but this is the last year he gets a pass

    • greenmtred

      I share your concern about that. There will be a lot of competition for the free-agent pitchers available next year, and it might be impossible/too costly to replace 60% of the rotation. I think it’s unrealistic to look at 2019 as an “all-in” year,so burning down the house in an effort to win the WS isn’t appropriate. Giving Castillo, Reed and Mahle another year to develop is.

  12. Nate

    If we got Roark for Rainey, I would expect something similar for Grey or I would say no deal.

  13. Davy13

    David Schoenfield, ESPN Senior Writer, proposed these moves for the Reds:

    The Reds shake things up by…
    1. Signing A.J. Pollock
    2. Acquiring Sonny Gray from the Yankees
    3. Trading Scooter Gennett, Scott Schebler, Taylor Trammell and Tony Santillan to the Indians for Corey Kluber
    4. Installing Nick Senzel at second base


    I like his suggestions. I’ll add a trade for JT Realmuto. Any thoughts?

    • Hotto4Votto

      I like the idea of signing Pollock if it’s good value and not too long on years. Trading for Gray will be based on the asking price. I wouldn’t want to give up Santillan this offseason, not with him being so close to contributing and with our need for pitchers to step into the rotation next year. Swap him out with Shed Long or Vlad Gutierrez, then yes.

      But I really like the idea of signing Pollock, trading Gennett, and moving Senzel to 2B. I think that sets the Reds up well moving forward, and in the short term Senzel + Pollock are likely as good or better offensively than Gennett + Hamilton were in 2018. It would also improve our current defensive options at both spots.

    • doctor

      regarding bullet 3, I rather substitute Jonathan India for Trammell. Otherwise, its same type of frame of a trade I thought of in December, but that was when Cleveland was under some pressure to lighten payroll. Now I expect Cleveland org is being much more hard line.

    • michael hutton

      that’s WAY overpaying for Kluber-but the rest is plausible…

    • Scott C

      I like signing Pollack, still think that is a need and Pollack should fill it if he can stay on the field. Not to excited about Gray, I like ourin house options for 5’th starter. I don’t ind trading Gennett, Schebler but not too excited about trading Trammell or Santillan. Everyone needs to understand both Kemp and Puig will probably be gone after this year (hopefully in regards to Kemp) And Roark and Wood will as well. These are two guys we are going to need in 202o. I think Senzel should be installed at second. I like Realmuto depends on what he costs. I feel the cost will be very high.

    • BK

      The Indians are said to want a “Sale” type return–both true “ace” level pitchers with 3 years of remaining control. Sale brought the White Sox IF Moncoda (BA #2), RHP Kopech (BA #42), OF Basabe (started 2017 season in the CWS top 10) and RHP Diaz (unranked).

      Key differences: Sale was 5 years younger than Kluber is now and Kluber’s contract will cost $15M more than Sale’s. No way the Reds should match the Sale trade. ESPN’s proposal referenced above would be a significant overpay in comparison.

  14. WVRedlegs

    Caesar’s Palace released their MLB total wins betting lines for over/under. The Reds came in at 77 wins, still last in the NL Central. Not much love for the Brewers at 83 1/2. Pirates at 78 1/2. Cubs at 89. Cards at 88.5.
    If I was a betting man, I think I would put a couple of hundred dollars down on an “over” for the Brewers at 83 1/2. I wouldn’t feel very comfortable about putting a hundred dollars down on the Reds for either an “over” or an “under” at 77 wins.


    • lwblogger2

      I’d definitely take the over on the Brewers. The NL Central is going to have talented teams. Even the Reds won’t be pushovers. It will drag the win totals down across the division.

  15. Shchi Cossack

    Every team mentioned in Heyman’s tweet were referenced as teams with prior interest in Gray. They are not included as having current interest. In fact, the Braves have been specifically mentioned as having no interest…


    #Braves could make a trade for a starter, but it’s not going to be Gray. They’ve not been in recent trade discussions about him.

    The Yankees have apparently lowered their ask since they definitely don’t need or want to carry his salary for the 2019 season. They got greedy when teams were actually interested. I sincerely hope the Reds pass at this point.

  16. JB WV

    Reds have made two trades for mid-level starters without giving up much. Can’t see them panicking now for another. Really need to move either Kemp or Schebler if another trade is made to relieve the glut of corner outfielders. Rather see them go for a better starter through free agency, though. Hmmm… didn’t realize panicking had a k in it till spell checker did it’s job.

    • michael hutton

      Puig, please oh please move Puig!!!

    • earmbrister

      Schebler is not necessarily a corner OFr for the Reds. He could end up playing a good amount of time in CF. Move Kemp to an AL team for a quality prospect that is years from MLB.

      • lwblogger2

        I think the Dodgers tried to trade him for just about anything and they couldn’t without taking on a large contract back. I don’t know if Kemp is movable without the Reds sending over a large chunk of money. He’s the 5th OF and possibly backup 1B this year I think. Could see Ervin go back to AAA I suppose or Schebler traded.

  17. matthew hendley

    Gray being linked with Padres and A’s. Reds specifically mentioned as not being involved. Guess there is another rumor quashed.

  18. WVRedlegs

    Now Heyman is referencing the SF Giants as the team on Gray.
    “#SFGiants interesting new entrant in Sonny sweepstakes. It does make sense; Giants prez Farhan Zaidi, who knows Sonny from A’s days, is said to be fan. It appears some other linked teams — A’s, Brewers, Braves, M’s, Pads, Reds — don’t appear to be at forefront of talks at moment.”

    Reds not at the forefront of talks. Whew.

  19. Private Gripweed

    Looks like Heyman is trying to meet his letter quota for the week again.

  20. Old-school

    Bobby nightengale notes today Michael Lorenzen is hitting everyday and doing outfield drills. He suggest Lorenzen could be in hitting groups and outfield groups in ST.
    Why not?

    • ToBeDetermined

      It’s good to see he’s relaxing and taking some time off from hitting the gym.

    • greenmtred

      Do we assume that Lorenzen is doing this at the Reds’ direction? It seems likely and, if so, very interesting. An internal option for center?

  21. doofus

    What if Reds take on the combined 2019 $15MM salaries and cap hits for Gray and Gardner who are FA’s after this season for something like a Mella, Gutierrez and R Stephenson, which helps the Yanks get under the cap? Maybe the Reds get one of those back of the bullpen arms like Holder, or maybe Michael King and Tyler Ward included. Adjust the players to achieve the right balance.

    Gray is not a dead arm, sorry, I don’t agree with the naysayers on this forum. He can help this team.

    Gardner has steady contact and on-base numbers for years and plus defense in CF. He can be the bridge to Trammell, Siri, Friedl and leadoff.

    Schebler and Kemp are the 4/5 OFers.

    Ellsbury/Frazier take over Gardner’s role in NY.

    • earmbrister

      Yeah, let’s give up a bunch of prospects for two mediocre guys with expiring contacts. I’ll pass.

      • doofus

        Please define bunch? Where did I say bunch?

      • doofus

        Did you not see that I mentioned Michael King and (Jonathan) Holder? Are these two pitchers “mediocre guys?”

      • doofus

        Do you not realize that by taking on Gray and Gardner’s expiring contracts and helping the Yanks get under the Tax, the Red’s may not have to give up any high end prospects?

      • doofus

        Have you ever looked at Sonny Gray and Brett Gardner’s numbers?

      • earmbrister

        Have you looked at Gardner’s and Gray’s numbers?

        Gardner had an OPS+ of 86 last year in his age 34 season. Is he going to improve at age 35? His prior two years were 104 and 92. Maybe mediocre is the wrong term. Well below average?

        Gray had an ERA+ of 89 last year. Yes, he pitched better on the road, but those road opponents included some really bad teams. I’ll grant you that he could very well bounce back. I’m sure that the new pitching coach has given his input and he believes Gray will find his former success. However, he was at best mediocre last year.

        I’d gamble on a Gray rebound, not Gardner, and I’d only gamble with a non top ten prospect, say Mella. IF a Holder, King, or say Contreras were included with Gray, of course you might be willing to offer a bit more in return. An additional prospect from the NYYs may allow Cashman to save face re his earlier seemingly high demands.

      • doofus

        Since we are “Cherry-picking” numbers, how about some more: Gardner’s combined WAR (fangraphs) 2016-2018- 2.5, 3.9, 2.5.

        His UZR/150 in CF, 2016-2019: 9.1, 1.2, 3.7

        Gardner would be a short-term bridge to Trammell, Friedl, or Siri.

        Sonny Gray’s WAR, 2016-2018: 0.7, 2.8, 1.7. It was 3.1 and 3.8 in 2014 and 2015.

        His groundball %, 2016-2018: 53.9, 52.8, 50.

        Both of these guys would improve this roster.

    • BK

      I would not be opposed to giving up a marginal prospect for Gardner to play CF this year. Actually, I’d prefer him over Gray. Maybe something like Mella and Romano for Gardner and Gray.

  22. Tom

    Let’s assume this isn’t a likely a playoff year for the reds but likely a strong, winning season – maybe we sneak in.

    With that thought process and with this offense, this team needs quality starts. I think last year’s team would have shocked a lot of teams with simply receiving healthy doses of quality or near quality starts.

    To me that means not trading away top 10 prospects for an ACE. It might mean signing an ACE to a multi year deal, though.

  23. Hanawi

    I don’t understand the desire to sign Pollack. He’s almost never healthy, is probably going to cost a fair amount, and he’ll cost a draft pick. I’m not excited about a year of a Puig/Schebler combo in center but it’s better than signing Pollack I’m my opinion.

    • JB WV

      I’m with ya, and I’m a little excited about a Puig in center. An athletic player that probably thinks he’d make a great CFer given the chance, well, here it is, go for it. Your best buddy/hitting coach in the dugout? Free agent year? Why not hit 40 dingers and be a menace in the middle of the lineup? 28 years old is the perfect time to do it.

    • Doug Gray

      No, but we do share the same middle and last names (Douglas Gray).

      • Michael Smith

        Ernesto, its Ernesto Douglas Gray!

  24. Mark

    What if Siri has an unreal camp and they want to put Senzel back to AAA for a month or so due to service time he may just tear it up and never look back in CF

    • Colorado Red

      Only need 2 weeks for service time.
      He will start at AAA, to give him some game time in CF.

  25. CI3J

    I’d give the Yankees AlfRod and one of either Bob Steve or Rookie Davis for Gray. Anything more than that would be overpaying.

    • Big Ed

      My theory on AlfRod is that they need to convert him to a pitcher. He has never hit and never will hit.

    • doofus

      Didn’t Rookie Davis have TJ surgery? Is he still in pro ball?

      • Shchi Cossack

        Way to go doofus! The Old Cossack has been basking in the glow of a new baseball ops org and approach and then you go and remind me of how bad the baseball ops was under BC & WJ. Thanks a lot…

        December 2015 Chapman traded to the NYY for:
        Eric Jagielo (traded to MIA in MAR 2018 for spare change)
        Rookie Davis (granted FA in NOV 2018)
        Caleb Cotham (granted FA in NOV 2016)
        Tony Renda (traded to ARI in JUL 2017 for spare change)

        For an elite closer in the prime of his career, the Reds obtained squat.

        Then to rub halite in open wounds, the NYY flipped Chapman for:
        Adam Warren (pitched 117 innings from 2016-2018 with sub 3.00 ERA before traded)
        Gleyber Torres (2018 AS @ SS with 118 OPS+ & finished 3rd in ROY)
        Billy McKinney (traded in JUL 2018 with Brandon Drury for J.A. Happ)

        Then to rub more halite in open wounds, the NYY resigned Chapman as a FA.

        This is the legacy of the BC/WJ baseball ops regime.

      • David

        He is out of the Reds organization. He was granted free agency signed with someone else.

      • greenmtred

        Way to pee in everybody’s cornflakes, Cossack!! I’d forgotten (because I purposefully blocked it from my memory) how badly that trade turned out, particularly if you follow it on through the subsequent activity, which you did. Maybe I’ll just go sit under a tree and await the impending blizzard.

    • Jeffversion1

      Rookie Davis, a minor league 1b-3b with power but issues with contact, a scrappy AAAA 2b-utility type, and the rights to Caleb Cotham should get it done.

      • jeffversion1

        Guess I posted after Shchi Cossack. Oops. Oh well.

  26. Satcmo

    This is nothing more than fabricated rumor leaking by the Yanks to drive up the asking price for Gray. The Reds were looking for a middle of the rotation type and they got one in Roark. Gray offers nothing of any value to the rotation as it stands now. The only way anyone new enters the fray is if they are a legit top of the rotation type.

  27. JoshG

    I’d rather give Mahle, Reed, Lorenzen and such one more chance at the #5 spot than trade or sign another mid to back of the rotation starter.
    for me it’s trade for a true number one (Kluber, Greinke or a surprise), OR sign Kuechel (who I think is a 2 or good 3) or call the rotation adding done and let the young guys fight for that last spot, then maybe invest the money somewhere else .. CF.. bullpen ..

    no need to sign anymore average pitchers, already have enough of those

    • Frostgiant80

      I agree I like the moves we have made thus far but I wouldn’t give up any of our top prospects for a old starter right now. Maybe 2-3 years from now if none of our pitching prospects turn out.

    • JayTheRed

      As I have mentioned before JoshG we are pretty much on the same page. I am beginning to think though that the Reds should address if they are going after Realmotu, upgrading CF or get a solid reliver first then focus on that top starter. We can always give the kids 1 last chance like you said.

      I also have this strange feeling that if the Reds did make these moves first it might entice Kuechel more to come here.

  28. JayTheRed

    This is interesting .. Sonny Gray’s stats away from Yankee Stadium 2018

    7 – 5 , 3.17 ERA,
    Gave up only 3 HR
    Opponent Batting Avg. .226
    22 BB , 78 SO ,
    15 games pitched outside of Yankee Stadium.

    Prior to this his numbers were very good with Oakland. a Solid #2 guy.
    If we can stay out of top 7 or 8 prospects to get him I say do it.

    • Hotto4Votto

      Unfortunately, GABP plays more like Yankee stadium than most other parks.

      • JayTheRed

        It might not be the ballpark dimensions though , It could be the pressure of pitching in New York and for the Yankees.

    • Hotto4Votto

      Maybe. Still, doesn’t inspire confidence that he would fold under the pressure of playing in NY.

  29. Tom Mitsoff

    At around 3:30 p.m. ET Friday, Ken Rosenthal tweets that the Reds are “making progress” in talks with Yankees toward acquiring Sonny Gray. They must really believe that a reunion with Derek Johnson will work some magic.

    • pog

      Jon Heyman
      Cuenta verificada

      Seguir Seguir a @JonHeyman
      In Sonny Gray talks, Yankees have shown interest in 2B prospect Shed Long and C prospect Tyler Stephenson from Reds, among others, who have a nice prospect list. A draft pick could also factor into a potential Sonny deal.

      12:46 – 18 ene. 2019

      Looking more and more like a deal.

      If Stephenson goes does this put Realmuto in play. Probably not, but it is to dream.

  30. Hotto4Votto

    Seeing Long and T. Stephenson being discussed as a potential return for Gray. WAAAAAY too much of a return if either is traded for Gray. No one in the top 10 should be in the deal. Please Reds, you’ve been pretty savvy so far, don’t get dumb now.

  31. Scott C

    Hate to read that latest rumor. I just can not see obtaining Gray, maybe if that hadn’t’t obtained Roark and Wood but certainly not now. I certain hope they don’t give up Stephenson or Long. Need to go below that in the organization for 1 year of a #3 at best pitcher.

    • Hotto4Votto

      It would certainly undo some of the good faith I’ve recently found in the FO if they turn around and something dumb like this.

  32. Steve Mancuso

    The Yankee asking price for Gray is falling. Their fans turned on Gray last year. Yankees have to trade him and have acquired enough pitching that Gray is expendable.

    Gray is better than Roark, so the return should be a little better than what they gave up for him. OTOH, their need for Gray is less since they’ve signed Wood and Roark.

    It’s moving in the right direction. If Reds can get the deal down to the next tier of prospects, they should do it.

    • Hotto4Votto

      If rumors are to be believed, which doesn’t seem to be the case most often, they’re actually moving all over the place. At one point it was rumored Trammell (#3 on RML) was the ask, which is the most pie in the sky ridiculous ask. Then it was Santillan (#4) Gutierrez (#9) or Mella (#16). Now it’s T. Stephenson (#6) or Shed Long (#8).

      Anyone in the top 10 is too much for 1 year of Gray who’s coming off a rough year.
      Mella is the range of prospects that should be considered here. Who is rated, and has consistently been rated better than Rainey.

      • Scott C

        Im good with Mella going, perhaps they can add another lower tier prospect. Perhaps even pick up someone to play center unless they are thinking of still signing Pollack.

  33. Steve Mancuso

    Sonny Gray pitched a lot better last year than his ERA indicates. You have to look at his other performance stats. He’s not great, but he’s better than average. Example, Steamer projection (limited innings) is 3.78 ERA for 2019.

    • BearcatNation

      I’m with you. Get them down to that next tier if prospects (#10-#15 type), and I’d be happy with that deal. I think people have recency bias with Gray. There is more evidence out there that he is a solid #2-#3 type guy than a back end rotation arm.

      • Roger Garrett

        You can win some games with just league average starting pitching.Gray is better but he is a on a one year deal just can’t give them any top prospects.Maybe somebody a tick above where Rainey was on the list.Yanks don’t want him and are just looking for the best offer.I always thought Gray just got overwhelmed by the big lights in New York and with no DH in our league plus another weak hitter in most lineups he could be really good for us.

  34. Jim Davis

    I’m okay with the prospects mentioned. I don’t want to give up Senzel or Trammell. I like the deal as “rumored”.

  35. Tom Mitsoff

    The situation with Gray on the Yankees roster is very similar to Tanner Roark with the Nationals. The Nats upgraded their pitching staff via free agency, and wanted to rid themselves of Roark, who might have been headed to a bullpen or swingman role, and his $10-million salary. The Reds were able to swap a low-tier prospect, Tanner Rainey, in a trade that worked out for both. I agree with other commenters above who say that top-10 prospects are too much for Gray, who the Yankees have already said they have no use for — particularly since the Reds would only get one year of Gray.

    • Steve Mancuso

      Gray is 29 and signed for $7.5 million in 2019.

  36. Scottya

    Maybe the reds can pick up a bullpen upgrade with gray. Shed long should return gray and another, I would think. If they add the draft pick rumored. Maybe it could be Chad green???

    • Scottya

      Fact if long is involved, the Yankees have to clear another 40 man roaster spot. Kahnle and holder are decent fly ball bullpen guys. I hope we’re going for Chad green

  37. Matt Hendley

    And another 3 team arangement is being discussed involving the Reds and Yankees…..I am starting to beleive that the individuals over at MLBTR got ichy trigger fingers.

  38. Matt Hendley

    However if it is long and t. Stephenson being discussed then something good better come back with gray.

  39. Joe

    The Yankees are just crazy…Why do they think a 1 year rental of a player who had an objectively pitiful 2018 season is worth one of our top 10 picks?

    If they want to make a deal with the Reds, I think they need to take a look at the Tanner Roark trade. Base your requests on that kind of value.

    Gray is worth a lottery pick prospect. Maybe an Alfredo Rodriguez or Scott Moss.

    Not sure what the Yankees are smoking on this one. Everyone knows they don’t want to keep Gray.

    • doofus

      Maybe Cashman isn’t crazy, he just remembers what WJ/BC were willing to take for Chapman?

  40. Old-school

    Get gray for a draft pick or lower level prospect. Flexibility and low risk and 4-5 guys playing for the Reds in 2019 motivated to earn their best contract of their careers is a good thing. deadline moves or QO for draft picks are options For once, MLB traderumors can’t stop taking about the Reds. Lorenzen and position play is now up. Bobby nightengale at the enquirer just validated what we all new….Gennett had a bum throwing shoulder. His MRI is better now than it was???? No way you extend a guy with a questionable shoulder. Once again…patience and due diligence from this new regime.

  41. WVRedlegs

    Color me dubious. This Gray story changes as much as the wind direction does. Somebody else will be at the forefront tomorrow morning.
    Had a very good Reds Caravan stop tonight. Lots of good things to hear. Optimism abounds at this time of year.

    • Matt Hendley

      Indeed, for the yankees being close to trading Gray to talking about him today, with no concrete peices, it just seems as if this a made up rumor.

  42. earmbrister

    Someone at MLBTR made the observation that Ottavino puts the NYYs over the 40 man limit. If no other move is made, the return for Gray can’t be someone on the 40 man roster. That seemingly rules out Mella and Long. There’s no way I’d trade Tyler Stephenson for one year of Gray. Offer one of the SS prospects, Garcia or Rodriguez, or a # 13 prospect or higher not named Siri.

    Walk away if the deal is more expensive than that. Let one of the youngsters win the # 5 spot in the rotation.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      This is accurate. I checked some NY media reports, and someone will have to be removed from the Yankees 40-man roster before the Ottavino signing becomes official. Gray seems to be that 41st player. So it seems that the Yankees are literally waiting out the clock until Ottavino applies signature to contract to see what prospect they can extract from some other team.

  43. lwblogger2

    I guess I just don’t see how Gray is really that much of an upgrade over guys like Reed and Mahle. And he’s another 1 year guy. I don’t want the Reds spending prospect capital on rental players when they almost lost 100 games last year.

    • BK

      My guess is that if the Reds acquire Gray, most will be very comfortable with the “prospect” we give up.

      • Matt Hendley

        Tell brandon Finnegan he has one last sacrifice to make for the reds

  44. John Kitchens

    Matt Hendley, that was hilarious!

  45. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I just think Sonny isn’t the one for us. Experienced, yes. I do believe he would be better than what we’ve had. But, I believe we should be looking for a top-tier talent.

    • TR

      If not this year, then go for top tier starting pitching next year when the Reds should be ready to contend in the NLC. Let’s see what the new pitching coach can get done with what the Reds have. This year, a season of around .500 would be a great improvement.

  46. Hotto4Votto

    It’s going from bad to worse with the latest update. Now saying it’s expected Long and T. Stephenson AND a draft pick going back to NY. Wow! I can’t believe what I’m reading. Would be an incredible overpay, incredibly stupid move to make. It would completely undo any positive movement the FO has done to this point. Is this real life? The Reds can’t be so willing to get swindled by the Yanks again can they?

    • Matt Hendley

      Just read it myself….the only thing i can phathom is that there are more parts in play either from the Yankees or a third team. It would be a major overpay if it is as stated. At least they are saying that this will be complete by the weekend. Massive overpay if true. Just had to say it again

      • Hotto4Votto

        If the Reds are getting Clint Frazier and Holder back, then I could see making this deal. But if the Reds get nothing back that improves the club in 2020 and beyond, it’s incredibly shortsighed and incomprehensible. This offseason would essentially amount to giving up 4 of our top 12 prospects and a comp. balance pick just to be a little better than .500. Giving up the pick would also mean losing the pool money attached to it, meaning we have less options to do an overpay later down the line, like we were able to do with Siani this past draft. This is the range of picks that have recently netted us Trammell and Downs, so it’s certainly not without value on it’s own.

    • WVRedlegs

      Ditto. Incredibly stupid to trade TStephenson and a high draft pick for Sonny Gray. Shed Long by himself is a tad high. But 3 prospects for Gray is stupid stupid. What a front office flub this would be if it comes to fruition. Talk about setting a guy up to fail in the fans eyes by stupidly overpaying for him. The first sign of struggles by Gray and the fans will be howling for the PBOB’s head.

  47. JayTheRed

    Just remember these are just rumors some of which are just reporters guessing who might be involved.

  48. Tom Mitsoff

    Just FYI, Jon Heyman tweeted Saturday morning at around 10 a.m. ET that he expects Gray to be moved this weekend, with the Reds still in the lead. Heyman said he expects either Long or Stephenson plus a draft pick to go to NY. If that is true, it’s an overpay for a guy who the Yankees are going to be releasing if they can’t trade him.

    I’m sure someone in our very knowledgable audience knows this — What happens if a player who has agreed to an arbitration number with a team (Gray agreed to $7.5 million with the Yankees) gets released outright before the season begins? Do the Yankees have to cover that salary commitment? Would Gray have to go through waivers or would he just become a free agent?

    • Matt Hendley

      He would go through waivers…. if picked up then he would be the responsibility of the new team to pay. If he clears waivers then the yankeea pay all but the league minimum when a new team picks him up as a FA

      • Tom Mitsoff

        If he goes through waivers, he’ll never make it to the Reds. I believe the way waivers work is that the league that American League teams would have first priority because the Yankees are in the American League. If it goes by overall record and not by league, the Reds would still be ninth in line. So Dick Williams knows if they can’t make a deal with NY, they won’t get a shot at Gray.

    • Hotto4Votto

      ARB salaries are only partially guaranteed if cut before the season begins. There are time limits, like within the first 16 days of ST then 30 days of prorated salary is guaranteed, if between 16 days and the end of ST then 45 days of prorated salary is guaranteed. Once on 25 man roster for OD the salary becomes guaranteed.

      • Matt Hendley

        My bad, instand corrected, i dont know where my mind was

    • lwblogger2

      Tom, I think he said Long AND Stephenson plus a pick.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        His tweet said, “Teams are talking about two prospects and a draft pick going for Sonny. One of 2B prospect Shed Long and C prospect Tyler Stephenson may go.” I interpret that as meaning that there may be two prospects, with one of them being Long or Stephenson. Again, I don’t believe Williams will give up a top-10 organizational prospect for a player who is about to be released if not traded. I would be in favor of pretty much any two non-top-10 prospects going to NY if that is ultimately the case. Also remember that any details being reported are coming from the NY standpoint. The Reds don’t leak trade rumors to the media.

  49. Tom Mitsoff

    Also keep in mind that the names of Long and Tyler Stephenson were leaked by the Yankees, probably in hopes of driving up offers from other teams. It can’t be a Long-for-Gray swap because Long is already on the 40-man roster for the Reds, and would have to go there for NY. Gray is being purged because he is player #41 on the Yankees’ 40-man roster once they sign Adam Ottavino. To make the roster math work, the Yankees would need to receive a player not on the Reds’ 40-man roster.

  50. Tom Mitsoff

    Gray was born and raised in Nashville, and played for Vanderbilt (located in Nashville). Don’t know if he still lives there or not, but there might be some appeal to him to consider an extension with the Reds (if they get him) due to geographic proximity. His college pitching coach has a multi-year deal with the Reds, which may also be attractive to him. Just speculating on why the Reds’ level of interest is so high.

  51. lwblogger2

    Looks really close now and I’m NOT happy. I’ve been on board with the moves made this off-season. They’ve been good deals for the Reds. Stephenson (the catcher) and Long for Gray however is a terrible deal. Even if Gray works out, the Reds give up likely 6-12 years of talent for him. I really hope this move doesn’t happen.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Just my opinion, there is no way that it is both Long and Stephenson for Gray alone. Dick Williams is smarter than that. He’s shown that to my satisfaction so far this off-season.

      • Matt Hendley

        I tend to agree. Even walt jocketty wouldnt make that trade. There has to be a peice or peices that we havent heard about.

      • lwblogger2

        I hope you’re right Tom. One and a draft pick is an overpay. Both or both and a draft pick is unfathomable to me. This especially true after some strong moves this off-season.

      • Old-school

        Gray had a below avg season for him in 2018. All pitchers do. He’s 29 and 2 years ago was the target for a mega trade ACE. It’s a reasonable assumption that he declines the QO after this season and the Reds receive the draft pick next year they give up now. If he stinks, well – you win some and lose some . It’s a wash except for Shed Long ( who is never playing for the Reds at 2b) and $7 million in payroll in 2019.

        On the other hand , he could revert to his career averages and be solid. Ken Rosenthal is reporting he is amenable to a longer term deal. Now, Tyler Stephenson??? No.

  52. Sabr Chris

    I’ve been wanting to get Gray all winter. Really think his issues last year was the pressure of playing in Pinstripes.

    But not at the rumored cost. Two sub top 10 and a pick okay but I’d only give up one top guy and that would be it.

    If we are giving up Long and Stephenson I have to think it’s a bigger deal.

  53. Randy

    I am encouraged by the trade with the Dodgers. Please correct me if I’m wrong, I thought we were supposed to get PITCHING? Roark, Woods, and (I hope not) Gray? Really? A center fielder maybe???

    • Michael E

      Lorenzen is working out in CF right now…and all accounts have Bell open to it. Let’s face it, Lorenzen is a solid, not great RP. He has/had good bat skills in college and in very limited, nothing-to-lose pitcher hitting in MLB. I hope he gets a long look in CF. He is big, strong and fast enough and played OF in college. I think he offers more upside as a CF than a pitcher at this point, but we’ll have to see if he can hit it when pitchers are being very careful. I say he was already being pitched to very carefully when at bat this past year and he showed well.

  54. Matt Hendley

    New update: talks are moving away from Stephenson and centering on long now

    • WVRedlegs

      No mention of that CB-A pick either by Heyman. Heyman needs to get his crap together. Reckless and shoddy reporting.
      If it is Shed Long and Long only, that would be about more in line.
      I bet Stephenson is getting some interesting questions today out on the Caravan.

  55. Shchi Cossack


    Yankees, Reds are finalizing the Sonny Gray trade. infield prospect Shed Long and a draft pick are expected to go to NY, and possibly a 3rd lesser piece. Long is an excellent hitter, fair defender. Just need to cross t’s, dot i’s (ie medicals, 40-man considerations, etc.)
    4:06 PM – 19 Jan 2019

    • Shchi Cossack

      Long is OK, but Long and the 36th pick in the rule 4 draft is too much.

      • Roger Garrett

        I agree its too much for a guy on a one year deal.I understand with all of these guys on one year deals that the Reds could just go out next year and do it all over again by trading or signing players but you have to really careful as to what you give up.Time will tell as it always does with prospects but Long can hit and if you can hit you can play somewhere in the big leagues for a long time.

      • Shchi Cossack

        Roger, I agree that Long has a future at the MLB level, but it won’t be with the Reds. He’s blocked at 2B and he can only play 2B, so he becomes expendable. If the Reds are dealing the comp B selection in the 2020 draft rather than the comp A selection in the 2019 draft, I could even swallow that deal for Gray.

      • Hotto4Votto

        Agree, it’s too much. Maybe the Yankees sending someone else, a reliever maybe. I don’t know.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Wouldn’t be the first time Jon Heyman got something wrong. He and others are fed a lot of stuff from front offices hoping to influence negotiations. Doesn’t always turn out that way in the end. Early reports (not Heyman) had Yankees asking for “high-end major league talent.”

      • lwblogger2

        I don’t agree on Long being stuck at 2B. There are a lot of scouts who think he might be best served in the outfield or 3B. Maybe he’s blocked but he’s a couple years away. I don’t like the proposed deal for 1 year of a pitcher who may not be better than Mahle or Reed.

  56. Matt Hendley

    Only explanation for that kind of return would be the yanks paying money with the contract

  57. BigRedMike

    This is a great trade for the Reds. Long is easily replaced considering 2b only. I understand Gray with only one year, but, it gives the Reds flexibility for 2020

    The rotation looks solid now

    Mahle, Reed, Romano can fill in as needed

    In today’s baseball I would rather rotate 2 starters via free agency each year and build up the bullpen.

    Gray will be really good for the Reds. He had some strange results last year driven primarily by Yankee stadium

    Great move by the FO

  58. lwblogger2

    Reds are apparently throwing in the towel on the young pitching, making the rebuild relatively pointless. Makes one wonder why they couldn’t do something like this sooner and not rebuilt at all?

    So they are saying Mahle, Reed and the crew are bullpen guys. Well I’m so glad they lost all those games to find that out.

    • CP

      I think the losses are a sunk cost and somewhat necessary. I also think the organization got a good glimpse of their young pitchers lack of development and this year is designed to be a bridge from the rebuild to competing again.

      Also, this organization, from the front office to the roster and the coaching staff looks a lot more flexible & unconventional than in previous years. Teams need more than 5-6 pitchers nowadays, and the kids will no doubt get opportunities to show what they can do. Mahle, in particular, showed that he deserves more shots, but I bet we see Reed and Romano get some serious innings as well. I don’t think the Reds are necessarily done yet (they haven’t even spent real money yet!), and I’m curious who ends up in the bullpen and who ends up in the minors. Kinda feels like time to give up on the starting careers of Mr. Stephenson and Mr. Finnegan, but I am curious whether the new pitching coach can have an impact on them.

    • Michael E

      One year SPs in Wood, Roark and Gray are hardly throwing in the towel on young SPs. It is buying one more year, a full year, working with a new pitching coach and philosphy. By this time next year, it’s possible Wood, Roark and Gray are all gone and a couple of young pitchers that suddenly blossomed under Johnson are in the rotation with Castillo. The Reds will have a lot of salary off the books in 2020, so a big FA signing or trade for costly SP is just as likely next year if not moreso.

      I don’t have high hopes for Finnegean, Stephenson, but you never know. A new voice and one change in delivery or a new pitch and boom, you have a suddenly good SP making near minimum for a few years. I hope Johnson can teach Mahle and Romano breaking pitches and push these young pitchers to throw the breaking/off-speed much more often. If the fastball usage sinks below 60% I think that will portend big improvements for several of these young pitchers that way overthrow straight fastballs.

      • Matt Hendley

        Mahle has an option left and would behoove him to polish his stuff in the minors….he will be a starting pitcher again. Reed is and always should have been a releiver. Stevenson is getting a last chance look… i wont be shocked if Finnegan is DFAed. Romano is a releif pitcher at least until he shows he knows what a change up is. Point is these guys have gotten their chances, some more then enough. Like the rotation look as is. We are comming to the point that disco will soon be a FA and we need to do something now with what we have in the field expecially with puig

  59. Optimist

    Blandino is 3 yrs older than Shed. Would you trade Blandino for Gray? How does Gray compare to Harvey/Feldman/Straily – to mention the most recent short-termer? If (yes it’s a big if) $$$ come back with Gray does that alter the perception – and if so, is the complaint about losing Shed the player or Shed the value?

    It would be good, though, to get club options on the SPs. As is, awfully big turnover next winter.

  60. WVRedlegs

    How many Vandy pitching alums are out there in MLB that pitched under Johnson? Why stop with Gray?

  61. Tom Mitsoff

    Ken Rosenthal, in a completely speculative tweet, says Sunday at 11:34 AM Eastern time that the trade may be delayed because perhaps the Reds are trying to negotiate an extension with Gray. That would make a lot of sense. It makes much more sense to surrender Long and a draft pick for two or more years of Gray than it does for just one year.

    One additional year under Reds control and then perhaps an option year for Gray would make this trade much more palatable.

    • Bob Purkey

      Has to be somebody else involved here. Long is on the Reds 40-man, so that still puts them 1 man over with the Ottavino signing. Maybe somebody like Brett Gardner is coming back. The Yanks turned down his option and signed him to a 1 year $7.5MM contract with a $2.0MM buyout. He’s 35 and on a 1 year. That clears the final 40 man space for Ottavino and the Reds have a bridge to Trammel.

  62. Tom Mitsoff

    At 12:02 P.M. Eastern time, Jon Heyman tweeted that the Reds are indeed in negotiations with Gray for an extension. My speculation completely: What the Reds surrender to the Yankees may be dependent upon whether or not an extension can be reached. If the Reds get one year of Gray, perhaps it’s for either Long or the draft pick, but not both. If the extension can be negotiated, then perhaps it’s the draft pick and Long.

  63. scottya

    Keuchel/Gray age 28 seasons:

    Keuchel – 4.55 ERA/3.87 FIP
    Gray – 4.90 ERA/4.17 FIP

    Career stats through age 28:

    Keuchel – 839 IP, 3.78 ERA, 3.71 FIP
    Gray – 900 IP, 3.66 ERA, 3.74 FIP

    Reds trying to extend Gray. Hoping that they continue to say “where not done yet” and that Reds a few million back in the deal to keep improving the team.

  64. Michael E

    When you look at his pitches, even in a bad last season, he has as good as stuff as anyone on our team. Using pitcherlist.com analysis, looks like that sinker, slider and change up all generate good GB% and are generally solid or good pitches. If PC Johnson can tweak a thing or two, Gray could easily be a top 10 NL SP and a poor-man’s ace. If, if, if…but still, I am fine with trading Long and a pick for a shot at a psuedo-ace.


    • Michael E

      don’t forget to scroll down on pitcherlist pages for the pitch by pitch analysis…FYI